Rio 2016 Olympic champion Ferry Weertman of the Netherlands and Arianna Bridi of Italy snatched the gold medals at the ninth and last stop of the FINA/CNSG Marathon Swim World Series 2019 in Chun’an, Zhejiang province, China, on Sunday September 29, while Kristof Rasovszky of Hungary and Rachele Bruni of Italy kept leadership of the overall rankings.
With a temperature of 30°and water temperature around 27°, a total of 27 men swimmers competed in the men's 10km race.
Despite Weertman being a little bit rusty after the first two laps, the Dutch found his own pace from the 5th lap. The Dutchman enjoyed a clear dominance at the finish pad as he took the victory in a time of 1h56m00s13. Matteo Furlan of Italy came second in 1h56m05s30 and Kirill Abrosimov of Russia finished third 1h56m12s24.
Kristof Rasovszky of Hungary eneded up fifth in 1h56m12s91 and maintained the leading position on the rankings after all nine legs of the World Series.
The women's race was fiercer as a group of swimmers was always in the first pack and the gap between the top four swimmers was within 1.5 seconds after the 10km race. Italian Arianna Bridi took the victory with a strong finish in 2h04m05s44 while Brazil star Ana Marcela Cunha, champion of last leg, had to concede to a silver medal by one stroke, 0.33 second behind. Newly-crowned World champion Xin Xin came third, touching home in 2h04m06s69. Rachele Bruni of Italy was the fourth today in 2h04m06s93 and stayed on top of the overall rankings.
Chun'an leg was the last meet of the 2019 circuit of the FINA/CNSG Marathon Swim World Series after eight previous stops in Doha (QAT), Seychelles (SEY), Setubal (POR), Balatonfured (HUN), Lac St Jean (CAN), Lac Megantic (CAN), Ohrid (MKD) and Nantou (TPE) from February to September 2019.
Ferry Weertman (NED), gold
“It is just a start of my season as I took vacation after the Gwangju World Championships and returned training a month and a half ago. It was a sort of training and it was amazing. My pace was not very fast in the first 4 laps, so I had to make it tough in the fifth lap when I noticed people were touching my legs and it was getting more crowded around me. I was really happy to finish well. I'm used to the cold weather and cold water. It was really good to see I could swim fast in the warm water and weather. It's a good preparation for the Olympic games.”
“I did not compete all the World Series and I am happy to start from here for my new season. My focus will be the Olympic Games. I'm hoping I can defend my title.”
Arianna Bridi (ITA), gold
“I tried to swim fast from the first lap but everybody was with me. So I slowed down a little bit and took a little rest during the race. But during the last 400m, I was in full charge and tried to use more legs in the last 20m and focused on the last three strokes. I practiced a lot of times yesterday on the last finish. It was my third victory at the World Series. But this year was very difficult for me because I failed to secure a spot to the Olympic Games at the Gwangju Worlds. I was very sad and empty. It was difficult to continue training hard in swimming. But it is always an honour to swim with Ana Marcela Cunha.”
Ana Marcela Cunha (BRA), silver
“What a busy year! I have competed many races this year so far that I don't even count the numbers, including 7 World Series, 4 races in Gwangju World Championships, the Mediterranean Games, a Brazil National Championships. And it is far from the end of the year since I will compete in the World Beach Games and World Military Games next month and maybe two more races in Brazil. I will come to Wuhan for the World Military Games. Frequent competition is the way for me to keep good form. It was comfortable to swim today since there is no big waves here.”
Xin Xin (CHN), bronze
“It was my fourth time swimming in Qiandao Lake leg and I like the place very much. I took six-week vacation after the Gwangju Worlds and only returned training one month ago. I was far behind my peak form and tired at the last moment of the race. I did not have more energy and speed. The World title did not bring me pressure at all, but confidence. I hope I can focus on training and preparation for the future competitions. I would like to learn more from the other top swimmers.”
The course: 1.66km (6 laps = 10km)
Water conditions: Fresh water
Water Temp: 27 degrees C.
Temp: 30 degrees C
Start numbers: 27men & 20 Women (16 countries and regions represented)